Infinite worlds. Endless possibilities . . .
Stel Alaster has never known life without the Corridor. It appeared suddenly seventeen years ago, the only portal to a parallel version of our world—Second Earth. Everyone on First Earth fears Mods, the genetically modified Second Earthers who built the Corridor. They are too smart, too strong, and have powers that can’t be controlled. Any Mod found on First Earth is branded, then detained in the Corridor’s research labs.
Only Stel has a dangerous secret. She has a power, too: She can open a portal to Second Earth . . . and several other parallel universes she’s discovered. If anyone ever finds out, she’ll be imprisoned, no better than a Mod or common lab rat.
But when the Corridor starts to fail, emitting erratic bursts of energy that could destroy First Earth, Stel must risk everything to save the people and world she loves. With the help of an escaped Mod and an infuriatingly arrogant boy from a third universe, Stel sets out to unravel the mysteries of the Corridor and stabilize it before it’s too late. The fate of every world lies in the balance. . . .
The Corridor by A.N. Willis was an interesting read. I love a good sci-fi story and the summary pulled me in immediately. There are alternate universes, science, and some swoony parts – if you like those things, you might also enjoy this story.
The main character, Stel, is solid. She loves her family and is willing to do whatever she needs to in order to protect them. Her father used to be the Chair of the Corridor Facility but when something goes wrong with the Corridor, he is blamed and ultimately removed from his position. The person who ends up replacing him is the same person who Stel and her family trusted…her best friend’s mom, Dr. Tabor.
Not only does this turn of events make things awkward for the girls and force Stel to avoid her best friend, but Stel also has a larger secret to keep. The day of the surge at the facility not only ruined her father’s career, it also changed Stel. See, her big secret is that now she has the corridor literally at her fingertips and she can travel to any of the alternate universes whenever she wants.
There is an added layer to this story in that Dr. Tabor has been gathering Mods (genetically modified Second Earthers) in camps because their version of Earth was destroyed by their experimentation with the Corridor. People on First Earth feared the Mods because they were stronger, faster, and had powers. Other than segregation to protect the people of First Earth from the Mods, I am unclear as to why the Mods were separated and then why the children were separated from their family. I want to know more.
What I liked about this book was the build of the worlds that Stel visits. I thought Willis did a wonderful job of explaining the existence of the different universes and then how they were accessible and linked. There were times that the story dragged a bit but in the end, I thought Willis did a wonderful job of closing out book one with a bang. I am very curious to see where book two goes with Stel’s story.
As the story moves forward, we are introduced to some other characters who Stel crosses paths with on another version of Earth. Flinn and Cohl are brothers and at first, Stel is drawn to Flinn. His personality is open and trusting and Cohl is the exact opposite, he is distrustful and it is that exact thing that throws these two characters together. Eventually things shift for Stel and she is instead finding herself drawn to Cohl. When Stel shares her secret with him, Cohl supports her.
There isn’t much more I can say here without giving anything away so…if you like alternate universe stories and sci-fi, consider checking this one out. I thought Willis did a great job with the science piece and tied in plenty of action and swoony parts to keep the story moving along.
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the review copy.